Prevention and Reducing The Risk Factors of Stroke

If a clot clogs a vessel in the brain, it often has serious consequences for the patient. But the risks for a stroke can be influenced. What role do blood pressure, diet and exercise play? Sport can positively influence risk factors for stroke, for example, prevent high blood pressure, obesity and diabetes.

It’s raining. Instead of the Alps in the Upper Bavarian Aschau all around today only cloud mountains can be seen. No weather for a walk. Therese Schmid (66) is still on the way. “It can not always be the sun,” she says. Twice a week, she and her husband travel the distance from their home to the school. Not to learn, but because they are taking part in a study.

“Pressure down, activity up!” is the name of the prevention project in which older citizens from the village accompany children on their way to school. “Above all, we are interested in whether something can be done to combat high blood pressure – the most important risk factor for cardiovascular diseases such as stroke,” says the prevention researcher. Birgit Böhm from the Technical University of Munich, who supervises the project.

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The lifestyle plays an important role

Stroke is one of the biggest threats to health in Germany. Every year, it affects around 270,000 people. The circulatory disorder of the brain usually occurs when a vessel in the head is narrowed or closed. Rarer is a brain haemorrhage behind it. For those affected, the consequences are often dramatic. No other event is responsible for so many cases of disability. The acute treatment of stroke has made progress in recent years. Even more important is the prevention.

“The studies clearly show that many risk factors can be well influenced by the individual lifestyle,” says Professor Bernhard Krämer, CEO of the German Society for Hypertension and Prevention. Which factors are, researchers examined the data from more than 13 000 stroke patients from 32 countries. Result of this so-called interstroke analysis: Nine out of ten attacks are directly or indirectly related to the lifestyle. Most would be avoidable.

Prevention clarifies the risk factors of a stroke

Number one in the risk ranking is hypertension. The affected person is not always aware of this. Expert Krämer explains to patients that hypertension can damage the blood vessels throughout the body – including those in the brain. However, if you go against him, the stroke risk drops. “Ideally, patients with exercise, weight reduction and a low-salt diet can bring about a significant improvement,” says Krämer. However, antihypertensive drugs are also often included.

When developing a stroke, various risk factors are closely linked. Lack of exercise, for example, also contributes to obesity. Both in turn promote diabetes and bad lipid levels – further risk factors for an attack. These connections are also in the Aschauer prevention project. Scientist Böhm works closely with a local pharmacy. “We advise people who have cardiovascular diseases here every day, so a healthy lifestyle and preventive care are very important to us,” says pharmacist Claudia Zangerl.

Together with Böhm, she organized two action days around the topic of cardiovascular health. Most of the study participants were found. “The willingness to talk about one’s own health is very high in the pharmacy, which is why prevention is in good hands there,” explains Böhm. Four times over the course of one and a half years, study participants are examined and their blood pressure is measured. Everyone gets an activity tracker that counts every step and monitors the heart rate. At least 10,000 steps a day, the subjects should go. Whether the values ​​can be lowered – as hoped – will be demonstrated in the coming year.

These measures reduce the risk of stroke
    • Lower your blood pressure, For experts the most important step. Good values can reduce the risk by up to 40 percent.
    • Stop smoking, Every fifth attack could be avoided if patients overcome their nicotine addiction.
    • Eat healthy and balanced, Lots of vegetables, fruits and fish, little salt – that protects the vessels. Another tip: drink little or no alcohol
    • Move enough, This benefits the cardiovascular system. In addition, the risk of hypertension, obesity and metabolic diseases decreases.
Risk factor atrial fibrillation: Listen to the heartbeat

But not all risk factors are as effective as hypertension. For example, atrial fibrillation also increases the risk. However, this widespread cardiac arrhythmia is often not discovered. “Cardiologists often do not see such patients until they have the first stroke,” says Dr. Philipp Sommer from the Heart Center Leipzig. When atrial fibrillation, the heart gets out of rhythm, it beats rhythmically and often clearly too fast. About 15 percent of all attacks are caused by it.

“Due to the irregular pumping activity, blood clots form in the heart, which in turn can block vessels in the brain,” explains expert Sommer. For a previous diagnosis, it would be important for people over 65 to “listen to their heart” more often. Because many sufferers feel the atrial fibrillation as a somewhat irregular, faster heartbeat. “You can then feel the pulse on your wrist and have any irregularities clarified,” explains Sommer. Sphygmomanometers also sometimes help to detect rhythm problems. “If the arrhythmia detection signal shines more often, you should take it seriously and go to the doctor,” says the cardiologist.

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Prevention: It is never too late for exercise and healthy nutrition

This causes an ECG or long-term ECG in case of suspicion. After diagnosis, patients receive medications that inhibit blood clotting. This so-called anticoagulation offers in many cases good protection against clots in the heart. Even if someone has to take medicines, it is not too late for prevention, says Sommer. The risk factor model is not static, but dynamic. “It is also with one or more risk factors in your own hands to influence the risk cheap – and remains his own luck blacksmith!”

Study participant Therese Schmid has internalized this. The activity tracker on the wrist is still a motivation. “You can see exactly how much or how little you move.” When she sees her on the display in the evening, that she just can not keep up with the steps, she goes to an extra round with her husband. “We have become almost a bit ambitious.”

These three values ​​count for the risk of stroke:
    • Blood pressure: Values ​​below 140/90 mmHg are usually considered ideal.
    • Blood fat: Without further risk factors, the total cholesterol should be below 200 mg / dl, the LDL below 160 mg / dl.
    • Blood sugar: Diabetics must discuss their individual goals with the doctor.
With this emergency rule also lay people recognize a stroke

If it comes to a stroke, the time runs for the person concerned. “Time is brain, in German time is brain – this is the most important rule for acute care,” says Professor Heinrich Audebert from the Center for Stroke Research at the Charité Berlin. As soon as the brain is no longer adequately supplied with oxygen, the nerve cells are mass-extinguished. Millions of them can be irretrievably lost, neural connections no longer work.

The faster the patient gets to the hospital, the better the damage can be limited. For years experts have worked to reduce the time between stroke and hospital admission. “Many sufferers first visit their family doctor instead of calling the emergency doctor right away,” says Professor Darius Nabavi of the German Stroke Society. As a result, valuable time is lost.

The so-called FAST test can help to interpret the most important symptoms correctly. However, there are other signs that the test does not capture. For example, suddenly appearing balance disorders, one-sided numbness, dizziness, unconsciousness or sudden onset of extreme headache. Vision problems can also occur, including temporary blindness.

In case of such symptoms also call the ambulance – even if the symptoms disappear again or subside. They can be harbingers of a stroke. Meanwhile, apparently more people recognize the symptoms – and call the emergency doctor directly. Figures from Baden-Württemberg show that as late as 2006, one-third of stroke patients reached the clinic via the family doctor. Ten years later, this share has halved.

Healthy Diet, Vitamins And Minerals That Help With Depression

Our diet has a direct effect on our immune system and thus makes a significant contribution to our health. If your blood sugar levels fluctuate because you are not eating well, you may experience sleep disturbances, imbalances, fatigue, and pain. Therefore, eat light meals to make you feel lighter and cleanse your body of harmful substances. This also includes a lot to drink (but no alcohol). Recommended are tea (no green or black tea, but herbal tea, fruit tea, lavender or lemon balm tea), fruit juice and still water (because carbon dioxide can also make you nervous!) Do yourself more often something good, and eat above all what You like it. Spend your money on being properly pampered on a regular basis and remember: Eating is also a “pleasure”!

So, eat happily and avoid everything that makes you unhappy! Here is my list of “Do’s & Dont’s” in the diet.

Avoid smoking, alcohol and drugs as much as possible.

    • Smoke
      Smoking is not only unhealthy, but has been shown to aggravate anxiety and panic attacks. Cigarettes make you nervous immediately, instead of relaxing you.
    • Alcohol
      Alcohol relaxes you for a short time, but after just a few hours, it makes you feel depressed, sad, and impotent. This also applies and especially if you are taking medication – your liver has enough to do with it!
    • Drugs
      Drugs strain your organism, and everything that strains your organism is depressive. Unfortunately, for space reasons, we can not devote ourselves to the harmful effects of individual drugs. So, please keep your hands off it, because drugs will not bring you on, but throw you back!
    • Coffee
      For a cup a day is certainly no objection, but you should keep in mind that coffee, black and partly green tea as well as tobacco consumption cause fears and panic or can increase in no time. Too much coffee causes anxiety, nausea, dizzy spells and a decline in performance.
    • Allergens and pollutants
      Spicy cleaners, fumes, etc. are a major drain on your immune system and additionally weaken you. Food allergens (lactose, etc.) can also trigger depression.

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These vitamins and minerals are good for depression: –

    • Vitamins in fish, fruits & vegetables and dairy products

Note in advance: Please avoid – if your doctor has not recommended otherwise – if possible, vitamin supplements and other supplements, because they often contain substances that burden your body additionally, and because they are usually not as healthy as natural foods. Regular intake of supplements can even increase mortality, as demonstrated by a large-scale study with 230,000 participants. So eat something healthy instead of swallowing pills!

    • B-vitamins
      Dopamine acts directly on the reward system and is crucial for our wellbeing. Since the synthesis of dopamine is directly via the B vitamins (especially B12), you should eat a lot of healthy fish and dairy products (with lactose intolerance, of course, only lactose-free products). Fish oil has many B vitamins and raises the level of omega-3 fatty acids; Alone, this has a long-term mood-enhancing effect. Incidentally, you can also find vegan supplements in the pharmacy.
    • Vitamin B6
      This vitamin B promotes serotonin synthesis (good for mood) and is mainly found in cereals and shellfish.
    • Vitamin B3
      Vitamin B3 regenerates the skin, muscles, nerves and DNA. It is mainly found in poultry, game, fish, mushrooms, dairy products and eggs. Vegans can meet their needs. a. cover peanuts, dates, mushrooms, dried apricots and legumes.
    • Vitamin B2
      Vitamin B2 is crucial for our growth and energy metabolism. Some antidepressants affect the absorption of vitamin B2, which can lead to deficiency symptoms! Therefore, eat plenty of dairy products, fish, meat, eggs and whole grains, and get regular medical check-ups.
    • Folic acid (vitamin B9)
      Also, a deficiency of folic acid is associated with depression. Folic acid is present in the following foods: wheat germ, beef, veal and chicken liver, beans, yeast, wholegrain bread, spinach, kale and asparagus, nuts, fruit, fish and egg yolk.
    • Vitamin E

This vital vitamin not only strengthens the immune system and helps to fight off pollutants but is also important for the nerves. Studies have shown that people with depression often have too low a vitamin E (tocopherol) level. Such a lack of vitamin E causes, among other things, impaired concentration, decreased performance, tiredness and increased irritability. Vitamin E is found mainly in wheat germ oil, sunflower oil and virgin olive oil. Please store these oils as light protected as possible and do not overheat them, just warm them up.

    • Vitamin A (Retinol)
      This vitamin is important not only for eyesight, skin, bones and tissues, but also for our nervous system and metabolism. Stress and the use of certain sleeping pills can lower the vitamin A level. Incidentally, vitamin A is not only found in carrots and other fruits and vegetables, but also in fish, liver, butter, egg yolks and dairy products. Always eat some fat with vitamin-rich fruits and vegetables, because otherwise the body can not absorb the good ingredients. Just nibbling dry carrots makes about as much sense in vitamin technology as chewing on a pencil end.
    • Vitamin C
      This vitamin is always important, which is why we are no longer concerned with it.
    • Vitamin D (cholecalciferol)
      Surely you also know the term “winter depression”. Vitamin D is mainly formed by the sunlight and has a great influence on our well-being. It regulates calcium levels and is important for bone formation. Studies have shown that vitamin D levels are often lower in older people with depression than in people without depression. Go out into the sun as often as possible and occasionally eat greasy fish such as herring, sprat, sardine and anchovy, salmon, mackerel, tuna and carp.

A lack of vitamin D can be caused among other things by the following factors:

    1. too low a consumption of dairy products,
    2. excessive consumption of alcohol and tobacco and
    3. too little (direct) sunlight (especially in the elderly).

Some studies have found a link between low vitamin D levels and dysphoria (depression and “bad mood”). Therefore, an additional (precisely dosed by the doctor!) Administration of vitamin D in depression is recommended by some researchers. Vitamin D is very important for the regulation of calcium levels in the blood and for bone formation. Vitamin D deficiency is therefore associated with calcium deficiency, and this in turn with osteoporosis and muscle cramps. However, administration of excessive levels of calcium and vitamin D seems to be associated with brain injury in some elderly people. Too much vitamin D and calcium are also associated with brain calcification and dementia. Therefore, here again applies: Only the right level is healthy. Always talk to your doctor before taking any vitamin supplements and minerals!

Even through sleep deprivation and light therapy, vitamin D deficiency can be resolved to a degree. Read more in our chapter “Sleep”.

    • Sugar and carbohydrates
      These vital substances increase tryptophan uptake in the brain and thereby raise serotonin levels, which has a positive effect on well-being. On the other hand, too much sugar and carbohydrates not only make you fat, but also lead to adrenaline in the long term, which in turn damages the cells and can even lead to the development of cancer.
    • Magnesium
      Magnesium deficiency can lead to depression, as evidenced by large-scale studies. Always make sure you have sufficient magnesium intake. Magnesium is contained in amounts above 100mg per 100g, especially in whole grains, wheat bran, oatmeal, oatmeal, whole rice, green vegetables, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, nuts, beans and peas.
    • Zinc
      Zinc has been shown to be antidepressant and should therefore always be present in sufficient quantities. It is found mainly in animal products (mainly in muscle meat, offal, fish and cheese). Vegans should eat a lot of whole grains, soybeans and peanuts. Sourdough bread improves the availability of zinc. Incidentally, postpartum depression is also often due to zinc deficiency.
    • Chrome
      A double-blind, placebo-controlled study involving 113 patients with atypical depression has shown that daily doses of Chromium Picolinate were significantly antidepressant in those patients who had high cravings for carbohydrates. Chromium is present in higher quantities in liver, kidneys and muscle meat, cheese and whole grains, oysters, pepper, nuts and brown sugar (molasses).

Environmental toxins and immunocompromising conditions
Although this note is not necessarily in our chapter “nutrition”, but is important: Environmental toxins such as exhaust gases, solvents, etc. damage the immune system and can trigger depression. Incidentally, inflammation, infections and immunodeficiency diseases are also depressing.

How To Use Olive Oil For Weight Loss

In an effort to lose weight, do not necessarily limit yourself to the intake of food, important that you balance your diet to the products that stimulate the metabolic processes in the body. One of these products nutritionists believe the olive oil and recommended to use it for weight loss. How to use olive oil for weight loss will be described in this article.

Already 6000 years ago, people learned about the excellent properties of olive oil. The first inhabitants began to grow olives in Mediterranean countries, especially from Asia Minor and Egypt. Over time, olive trees have grown in other countries and olive oil is deservedly nicknamed “liquid gold”, and for many states and peoples – a symbol of prosperity and economic well-being.

By the content of these substances of vitamins for the organism. A, E, D, K, acids (oleic acid, stearic acid and palmitic acid), olive oil to normalize the cholesterol level in the body and prevents the occurrence of tumors. Softening of the gastrointestinal tract, especially the pancreas and liver. However, people with the aggravation of gastrointestinal diseases should not take this oil for weight loss.

About the possibility of using olive oil for the purpose of weight loss are the results of experiments that have been proven to reduce its acidity, accelerate metabolism and reduce hunger.

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Taking twice a day one tablespoon of oil in a month, you can get rid of 2 to 5 kg. Olive oil can be used for making various foods, both the first and second as well as salad dressing, and so on.

In the world there are many recipes for cooking in their formulation, the olive oil.

Do you want to cleanse the body of excess fat, toxins? Then the following recipe is for you : 300 grams of white cabbage, finely chop the chopped cucumbers, onions and celery rust or celery chopped salad with salt, lemon juice and olive oil.

And here is the recipe of French salad with olive oil, which help keep a slim figure and cleanse the skin in winter when there are no fresh vegetables and fruits. To make this salad you have to tear salad or even roughly chopped, add the olives need, then be ready to salad dressing. The structure, which contains the following ingredients: 50 to 60 grams of olive oil, it should be high quality and refined, half a teaspoon of mustard, 20 grams of lemon juice and some pimento and seasonal salad.

It is important to remember that each lettuce a few hours later lose the beneficial properties, even if it is made of the highest quality, so it is advisable to eat only freshly prepared salads.

In order to have the effect of using olive oil, you not only have the right to use it, but also be able to choose it. The taste, color and smell of the oil depends on the location of the olive cultivation as well as the degree of ripeness of the harvested olives. The more ripe fruit oil has a mild taste and pale yellow. The oil harvested from olives made less ripe, greenish smell and taste it is spicy.

In many ways, the quality of olive oil is determined by the method of production of the product, olive oil was a refined and unrefined, the first and second, hot and cold pressed. It is considered a high quality virgin olive oil, since oil is not subjected to heat treatment and is not refined. This oil retains all the positive qualities besides oil has a pleasant smell and taste. Can be used for frying, refined oil, which is odorless and tasteless, and in the end, to prepare food that is high in temperature – this oil has a name, olive oil pomace is made from the cake, which remains after the first extraction.